” What we call the beginning is often the end.
And to make an end is to make a beginning.
The end is where we start from.”
– T.S. Eilot
You have been my second home, and I’ll definitely come back to visit you. Realizing that I’m not going to be here 7 hours per day, 5 days per week, 4 weeks per month, and 10 months per year, I feel empty. Empty of following my routine. Sprinting from Index to school, begging the teacher to go to sweetie shop, falling asleep in Chapel, sneaking food into Media Center, going to the toilet to play on my phone, and running away from Ms.Gift because my pants are navy blue not black….the fact that I’ll never get to do these things again will make me miss ICS even more. But the good news is no matter where I’ll go, I still pass you everyday, and you will always remind me of the good memories I have.
To all the teachers:
Thank you for not building a shield for me but training me into a strong adult who is ready to overcome every circumstances and tough situations. Apart from giving me knowledge, everyone of you has given me life lessons through your stories, and those stories give me insight to the real world. You’ve prepared me to be ready for the next step of my life, and I’m ready for it.
To Class of 2019:
No matter how far and how long, we will always be a part of the 2019 family, and the 2019ness will always stay with each of us. And no matter how long time has passed, my memories with you guys will never fade away.
To my NoomNim Family (You know who you are 🙂
Without you guys, I will never be able to survive high school. Thank you for putting up with me no matter how idiotic I am. Thank you for staying beside me whenever I need help and entertaining me whenever I feel down. You guys will always be my best family forever and beyond. ❤
On the damage blog I wrote last time, I focused on the topic of inequality between the rich and the poor and how those people are treated differently in the society. Apart from seeing this problem in reality, it is also portrayed in the book Cry, The Beloved Country. Going back to Arthur’s case, there are Absalom, Stephen’s son, and James’ son who are involved in this crime. Even though James’ son didn’t do anything, he still go with Absalom, and if he doesn’t have the intention to do anything to Arthur, he wouldn’t have gone with Absalom. He deserves to get punished but not as much as Absalom because he isn’t the one shooting Arthur. Because James becomes a businessman and has enough money to help his son, he gives the money to the police in return for his son to be set free. This is totally unfair since he is also in the scene, he could’ve been the one who encourages Absalom to shoot. The situation shows that wrong = wrong, but wrong + money = right.
However, Allan Paton also portrays the part where the rich is using what they have to help the poor. Even though it can’t completely solve the problem of the inequality, it can still heal the feeling of the poor and restore the relationship between the two different classes. When the village Stephen lives in is facing the drought, James Jarvis comes in to start the outline of the dam by placing sticks around. He also sends Napoleon help teach the people in the village new techniques to take care of their plants because they don’t really know how to take care of the plants. And after his grandson tells him that Stephen doesn’t have neither milk or fridge at home, James sends milk to Stephen right away. James shows that he has an intention to help the poor, and his act also reduces the gap between two classes of people. If all the rich starts to act like James, the inequality between the rich and the poor can fade away.
Even though it is generally said that everyone is equal in this world, equality never exists in the real world. The rich still have power over the poor, control the poor, and take advantage of the poor. If equality really exists, why do some people live in big house and some live in small house? Why do some people have everything? Why do some don’t? Why do some children get to eat good meals everyday and some don’t even get to eat anything? Because equality never exists for real.
In the novel “The Good Earth,” inequality between the rich and the poor is one of the main themes of this story. We can clearly see the difference between the lives of landlords and Wang Lung. The landlord gets to live in a big house, eats good food, sleep and stay in the house all day all night while Wang Lung and Olan have to work outside for the whole day, stay in a small house, and wake up really early each day. We can also compare Wang Lung’s life when he is facing poverty and when he has everything. Money doesn’t only affect the well being of Wang lung but also affects the personality and attitude; when he doesn’t have anything, he seems to value money a lot, but when he has all the money, he doesn’t notice its value and spend it without any plan. Apart from that, Wang Lung is treated badly when he is poor, but his reputation changes when he starts to become rich. The power of money can change the reaction of people toward him, those who are disrespectful to him suddenly obey him which is very strange.
In another story, “No Way Out,” it portrays how the rich takes advantage of the poor and the hardship the poor is facing. In the story, towkay, the owner of the fishing industry, keeps on taking advantage of Boonma, the leader of a poor family. When Boonma borrows money from towkay, he signs an agreement without knowing what it says. Because of this agreement, he has to work so hard for nothing because he will never be able to pay the towkay back which means that he is stuck with towkay. Boonma and his family lives in a slum without anything to eat, and during night time, the will have to use the light from the rich’s house to be able to see everything. Some people have so many lightbulbs, but on the other hand, some can’t even afford to buy a lightbulb. Other than that, the poor can’t choose how their lives will turn out to be because the situation is forcing them to do something they don’t want such as Boonma’s wife. She becomes a prostitute because she needs money to be able to survive while some women can just sleep on a comfy bed at home.
This world in unfair because everything is passed down from the previous generation to the new generation which is really hard to break the chain especially if the new generation already accepted that they will never be able to become rich. It’s sad, but it’s the truth that our world will never be equal.
For me, the challenge to “go there and find out” is a hard challenge because I have been living in comfort for 18 years; giving up this comfort would be really hard but possible. Because I have been to different communities which needed help, I have pictures of the condition those people are living in, and I know that I will be able to live in that condition. But the question I have in mind is “why do we need to give something away when we can just help those people without having to give anything away?” It’s true that helping people is important because human beings rely on each other, and if we put ourselves in their shoes, we would be in need of the same thing. On the other hand, will it be worth it if we stay with the people with disease and get infected? It is important to help others who are in need of help, but we should help them with what we can help without having to struggle. If I am a hiker, right now I would be the one hiking around the middle part not those we already reach the top and help others who can help people who are at the bottom. I can help them by giving advices, but I can’t throw a rope down the hill and pull them up. The factor that will prohibit us from taking this challenge is ourselves and comfort which makes it a lot harder for people to give up what they already have to help others.
“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.” – St.Augustine
Traveling isn’t only about having fun or shopping, but it’s a form of learning. Visiting different countries teaches you unique culture, tradition, and environment of people in the countries you visit. To be a responsible tourist, you should study some basic, well-known culture of the country or region you will visit before hand to avoid culture shock and to avoid being disrespectful in the country. Traveling isn’t only about you because you are representing your own country as well, if you make your country known for being disrespectful or irresponsible tourist, people from your country might not be welcomed to other countries.
The topic of responsible/irresponsible tourist reminds me of so many stories I’ve been through. I’ve been to summer camp in other countries several times, and there are lots of stories to be told. Greeting in different regions are different, and there was a time when a French guy was trying to greet me by kissing me on my cheek, but in Thai, a kiss on a cheek in considered inappropriate between opposite genders and strangers. I ended up running away from him leaving him with a big question mark on his face, so I consider myself an irresponsible tourist for not explaining the reason I ran away from him. On the other hand, I am a responsible tourist 99.99% of the time. For example, when I went to Taiwan to live with a host, I knew that I had to wait for the oldest person to start eating first before others were allowed to eat, or when I went to Canada, I said thank you to the bus driver before I leaved the bus because everybody was saying it even though in Thailand, we never say thank you to the bus driver.
Different culture can shape people differently, but different doesn’t mean you can look down on others’ cultures because you have to learn to accept the difference to be able to be a responsible tourist.
Why VancouVerdancy? Because Vancouver is green 🙂
15 hours apart from Bangkok…..melting pot of every nationality…..combination of sea, sand, and sun…..millions of maple leaves…..of course it’s Canada but where in Canada? Traveling down the south to the west coast, you’ll meet VANCOUVER (one of the most popular city in British Columbia).
Vancouver Art Gallery
If you happen to visit Vancouver, you’ll spot an enormous, ancient looking building standing right in the middle of Hornby Street, that’s the Vancouver Art Gallery. Calm but elegant are perfect for describing the exhibition filled with historical and cultural content of Canadian and Asian. You’ll never get to know the hidden secret in Vancouver until you step your foot into this gallery.
Capilano Suspension Bridge
Nature in thriller. Enjoying nature from the 70 meter tall and 137 meter long bridge is the highlight. Green is everywhere to be found, and the earthy smell is all around. Sunlight filtering through trees falls on the visitors and paint smiles on their faces. Wandering around, the next thing you know is you are lost in the woods because nature are giving you a warm welcome.
Your hands will probably worn off having to wave at every single creature you meet (there’re over 50,000 creatures here). Super cute, adorable sea otters are mesmerizing every visitors due to their cuteness. Fascinated by millions and thousands of jellyfish, visitors often take out their cameras to take a photos of those jellyfish. Immerse yourself in the aquarium for a day, and you’ll fall in love with these sweet creatures.
Waterfront Station and turn left equal Gastown yayyy! Melting pot on a street perfectly described how Gastown is like since it is filled with many different nationalities. Gastown is known as the most historical neighbourhood in Vancouver, and the moment you enter this area, the local feeling suddenly approach you. Souvenir shops one after another are on both sides of the street, and standing right in front of the area is the steam clock (there’re only two steam clocks in this world, and another one is in Japan).
ps. don’t miss the Japadog (Japanese style hotdog) food truck in front of the Waterfront station!
“No Way Out” is a novel that portrays the hardship of a poor family living in slum which is happening in today’s world. It seems like problems are approaching the family every ways, and the family always think there’s no way out from these problems. But is it because there is no way out, or is it because they don’t know there’s a way out?
I think the core of their hardships is lack of education. For Boonma, he is not able to read, so he signs the contract to borrow money without knowing that he will be taken advantages of. For both Boonma and his wife, they are not able to find well-paid job because their education level limits the jobs they can work for. For the children, if they get to study, they would receive more opportunities to find well-paid job, so that they can take care of their family. When everyone says, “you can’t choose where you will born, but you can choose your own path,” it’s almost impossible. You environment and financial status kind of set your path already, and it’s really hard to break out of the chain if you aren’t educated well enough.
I think what social should consider is the fact that not everyone will receive the same opportunity, and when you say “equality should exist,” do you really mean it? If equality means you have to live like a poor family and give up all your privilege, do you still want equality to exist? How about saying “giving opportunity to poor?” Because everyone comes from different place and different background, some might have more privilege than others, but if opportunities are given to everyone, I think everyone would be able to make use of the given opportunities.
Since I was young, I was taught using the beliefs or karma. “If you want to live in a good condition next life, you will have to be a good person in this life,” often said my mom, so I am living with the belief that I have to be nice to everyone. I grow up trying to be as good as possible, but as I grow, I learn that life isn’t all about being good. It’s about making decision whether you will walk on the right or wrong path, and my belief that good action will lead to good life in my next life fades. I turn my perspective to believe that my action in this life will determine my future in this life not next life. In the end, no one can be 100% good, so why live your life morally when you can live freely?
In “No Way Out,” all the characters hold the belief that they must have done something bad in their past lives, so they have to suffer this lives, and I totally disagree with their perspectives. It’s true that they can’t choose how they are born, but they can choose to make their lives better. If they still stick with the beliefs of past lives, then they wouldn’t have the motivation to live better lives. For them, it seems like everything has been determined already, and they always end up blaming their past lives. If only they focus on their lives in the present, they would know that they can still change the way they live. Only if they blame themselves earlier….
A Strange Library is a story about a little boy who goes to the town’s library to return and check out books like usual, but one day, he gets kidnapped by an old man who is in charge of the books in the basement. The boy is tricked by the old man, so he is leaded through a very complicated maze and is locked inside a reading room. He is told to memorize the three books the old man gives him, and if he can complete this task, he’ll be able to leave. He meets Mr.Sheep Man who is in charge of bringing him donuts and meals, and he also meets a thin girl who brings him dinner. Mr. Sheep Man tells him that the old man lies and will eat his brain instead of letting him go, so the boy comes up with a plan to escape. He escapes with Mr. Sheep Man and the thin girl, but they end up getting caught by the old man. Luckily, the boy’s eagle comes and help them escape, and the boy gets home safely.
There are both what I like and dislike about this book. I like the plot of the story because it encourages me to wonder what will happen next, and I also like the pictures on each page of the book because they are unique. However, I think the ending is a bit confusing since the boy’s eagle doesn’t play a big part throughout the story. I was actually expecting a lot more from the ending, but it doesn’t meets my expectation.
Trude was born in 1929 which was when there was the Wall Street Crash; she grew up in Bratislava, Czecholsovakia and escaped to England when she was nine. Her family was a middle-class family, and her childhood was fulfilled. She was living her normal life with activities provided by her aunt. She had limited memory of Hitler and the chaos in Germany because she was sent to England not long after Hitler came in power and was helped by her aunt to survive the holocaust. She stayed at a foster home while she was in England and was terribly homesick in the first month, but the family did their best to comfort her. Later on, she moved to London to stay with her aunt and uncle along with her siblings. Trude became a scientist, and she never stopped searching for her family who were left behind in Germany.
Trude’s story stands out to me because her story is different from others’ stories I’ve heard before. It isn’t traumatized and dramatic. She shows me that holocaust couldn’t drag her to sad ending; instead, she succeeded as a scientist. Her story portrays another aspect of how holocaust could change a person’s life positively; that’s why her story is powerful to me.